* targets 10 biofuel plants nationwide
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in China with Nigerian-Chinese consortia towards developing sustainable biofuels in the country.
A statement by spokesman of the corporation Ndu Ughamadu said the signing ceremony was held at the Nigerian Embassy in Beijing on the sidelines of the ongoing Forum for China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) Summit on Tuesday.
The two separate MoUs on the biofuels project development signed were between: NNPC and the OBAX-COMPLANT Consortium on one hand and NNPC and the CAPEGATE-NANNING Consortium on the other hand.
Speaking shortly after signing on behalf of the corporation, NNPC Group Managing Director, Dr. Maikanti Baru, said the MoUs signing was aimed at implementing the Federal Government’s mandate on clean, alternative and renewable energy programmes, particularly automotive biofuels production nationwide.
“The aspiration for the exploitation of renewable fuel resources in Nigeria is to implement our nationally determined contributions to the Paris Agreement; part of which requires the blending of 10% by volume of fuel-ethanol in gasoline and 20% by volume of biodiesel in automotive gas oil (diesel) for use in the transportation sector,” Baru said.
He described the renewable energy project as dear to President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration, saying that was why, shortly after assuming office as GMD, he made it one of the cardinal programmes of his corporate vision of 12 Business Focus Areas (BUFA).
Dr. Baru said as part of NNPC’s expanded programme on providing renewable energy solutions, the corporation also plans to power all its retail outlets by means of Solar PV facilities, as well as develop grid and off-grid solar power as a business and contribution to the clean fuels initiative of the Federal Government.
While assuring the two consortia that Nigeria’s investment climate under President Buhari was transparent and conducive to willing investors, Dr. Baru charged them to commence the implementation of the biofuels projects without any further delay as preliminary studies on the programme show clear ﬁnancial indices that are very encouraging for business growth.
The NNPC biofuels programme centres around sugarcane-fuel ethanol production; cassava-fuel ethanol production as well as oil palm-based biodiesel production.
While OBAX and CAPEGATE are two Nigerian companies, COMPLANT and NANNING are two reputable companies incorporated in China.
Speaking on behalf of the OBAX-COMPLANT Consortium, President of COMPLANT, Mr. Gu Haitao, expressed delight over the MoU signing, saying he hopes it “would culminate into helping NNPC achieve Nigeria’s renewable energy aspirations.”
Also responding on behalf of the CAPEGATE-NANNING Consortium, Chairman of the NANNING Board, Mr. Qin Chun Lin, said they looked forward to a great partnership with the NNPC on biofuels production.